“After all, just one virus on a computer is one too many!”
Fear comes in different shapes and sizes for different individuals. For some, it is a small, dark room. For others, it might be an abnormally large spider. However, the common horror that haunts almost all of us is a computer virus. We spend a hefty amount to ensure that our data is secure and private. Often, without knowing that the antivirus softwares do not always provide full-proof protection. We may not be protected against these security threats by the softwares:
USB DRIVE INFECTIONS:
Most USB devices have a basic security issue. They do not protect their firmware—the software that runs on the microcontroller inside them. That is often exploited to infect computers with malware in a way that is neither easily prevented nor detected. In an infected USB device, a malware program can replace the firmware by using secret SCSI (Small Computer System Interface) commands. This can make it act like some other type of device, for example, a keyboard. The spoofed keyboard could then be used to send commands to download and execute a malware program. That malware could reprogram other USB thumb drives inserted into the infected computer, essentially becoming a self-replicating virus.
Softwares that may be used to prevent an USB drive infection are USB Disc Security, USB Threat Defender, Panda USB Vaccine, etc.
From smartphones and tablets to notebook PCs, webcams seem to be a standard equipment these days. Just about every device we use has a camera on it. However, it might so happen that while you’re staring at your screen, someone on the Internet is staring back at you. The news often features stories about hackers tricking users into installing webcam spyware. These spywares give the hackers access to the webcam attached to the device. Through this, he may procure private information or sensitive images. The information may be later used for blackmail and other unlawful practices. A traditional virus scanner may not always catch webcam-related spyware or malware.
In addition to your primary antivirus software, you may want to install anti-spyware. Augmenting your primary anti-malware solution with a Second Opinion Malware Scanner such as Malwarebytes or Hitman Pro may be considered. This is because a Second Opinion Scanner acts as a second layer of defense. This will hopefully catch any malware that may have evaded your scanner.
By default, Wi-Fi routers and access points aren’t secure when you purchase them. Unless you enable encryption, people nearby can easily connect to your network. They can easily access your PCs and files. They also can capture your passwords or hijack your accounts for websites and services that don’t use SSL encryption. Examples of such are some Web-based email clients, Facebook, and Twitter.
Eavesdropping is more of a concern on public WiFi hotspots than it is on private networks. The best way to keep your traffic secure while on Wi-Fi hotspots is to connect to a Virtual Private Network (VPN), maybe to your work’s network, a server you set up at your home, or a hosted service designed specifically for hotspot security, such as Private WiFi or Hotspot Shield.
If you can’t use a VPN, make sure any services or sites you use while on the hotspot are secured with SSL encryption. If you use SSL, web browsers will have an https address, instead of http, and will display a pad lock or some other indicator.
Social engineering is a process of psychological manipulation. Using this, people are prompted to perform actions which results divulging confidential information, such as passwords, bank account details, etc. The most common form of social engineering is phishing. In this, a phisher sends an e-mail that appears to come from a legitimate business—a bank, or credit card company, etc. It requests “verification” of information and warning of some dire consequence if it is not provided. The e-mail usually contains a link to a fraudulent web page that seems legitimate—with company logos and content—and has a form requesting everything from a home address to an ATM card’s PIN or a credit card number. Once such details are divulged, the information is used for a number of illegal activities.
Think twice about following up on pop-ups and prompts on your machine. And be careful about the information you part with – whether that’s over the web, in person or over the phone. Be suspicious of emails asking for personal information. Think carefully before parting with sensitive information.
After all, prevention is better than cure!
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